Panetta orders probe of military day care centers

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 18, 2012 at 11:14 pm •  Published: December 18, 2012
Advertisement
;

In addition, Fort Myer began a review of the background files of about two dozen other day care workers to determine whether they should be fired, the Army said. That review apparently is ongoing.

"The safety of the children under our care is our most important responsibility," said Col. Fern Sumpter, the Fort Myer commander. "The quality of their care and safety has been and will continue to be our most important priority."

Sumpter said the day care center was closed "out of an abundance of caution" and the children moved to a separate day care center at Fort Myer. A Fort Myer spokeswoman, Mary Ann Hodges, said the center was closed on Dec. 13.

Of the two Fort Myer day care workers who were arrested, one faces five counts of assault and the other faces four counts of assault, according to the Army.

Based on the findings at Fort Myer, Army Secretary John McHugh said Tuesday he ordered an Army-wide review of hiring practices and management at every day care center.

"These initial findings are not only troubling, they are unacceptable, and we will make certain that adequate policies and procedures are in place, and that they are strictly followed and fully enforced," McHugh said.

___

Associated Press writer Lolita C. Baldor contributed to this report.